Tag: Rheumatoid Arthritis

Pack Health: A New Resource for Personalized Support

Needymeds exists to help you get healthcare costs under control. We know you need additional resources to make sense of healthcare —  that’s the whole point of the NeedyMeds Voice.

But what we don’t always talk about is the importance of finding your own voice. Do you ever find yourself with lingering questions? Do you ever have trouble holding yourself accountable? Do you ever fail to speak up?

We recently discovered a resource that supports individuals on a one-on-one basis, where a health coach comes right alongside you to keep you motivated and get your questions answered in your day-to-day life. It’s called Pack Health, and it’s a digital coaching service. This means they can reach you wherever you are and on your schedule – on the phone, online, or both.

These people get what you’re going through, and they’ll help you with everything from exercise and nutrition to budgeting and logistics. You set the goal, they’ll help you get there. It’s that simple.

We reached out, and they’ve opened up a special opportunity for our community. We were able to reserve 100 free spots for members

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All About Juvenile Arthritis

This post was written in collaboration with, and is also available on, ZipTrials.us – your go-to source for top medical news and trending health stories.

As Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month comes to a close, many still may be unaware of the disease. What are the symptoms? How prevalent is it, and what resources are available for affected children?

The word “arthritis” is actually a broad term that covers over 100 musculoskeletal disorders, including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Juvenile arthritis is among them. More common than most people think, the condition actually affects almost 300,000 children in the United States. This makes juvenile arthritis more common than juvenile diabetes and cystic fibrosis combined. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), juvenile idiopathic arthritis is one of the most prevalent types of arthritis among people under the age of 18. Other common forms include juvenile rheumatoid arthritis and juvenile chronic arthritis.

On the whole, the condition affects girls more often than boys. The CDC

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The Lowdown on Specialty Drugs II: Biosimilars and How to Get Your Insurance Company to Cover the Costs

Biosimilars are defined as “similar versions of an existing biological medicine by a different manufacturer.” Biosimilars may be used to treat difficult-to-manage conditions including rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, chronic pain, HIV and cancer, among other conditions. Because they are more complex and more difficult to manufacture than other pharmaceuticals, rigid compliance to regulations and quality control are crucial to avoid contamination and drug shortages. Their complexity also means that they are more expensive for the patient.

A recent article by NBC News suggests that “the number of patients who could benefit from these more sophisticated therapies will only continue to grow, in some cases by 15% annually.” But how will we afford them?

Changes are afoot in many health insurance plans, and some new rules state that any cost-savings must be weighed against severe health consequences, particularly where obtaining prior approval (an often lengthy process) or “step therapy” where a number of cheaper drugs are tried before moving on to more expensive ones.

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The Lowdown on Specialty Drugs

Healthcare costs continue to be a concern, despite efforts underway to reduce them through healthcare reform initiatives.  One area, in particular, is worrying patients and physicians alike: specialty drugs or biologics. An article in Workforce Management reports that specialty drugs “make up about 17% of employers’ total drug costs, even though just 1% of the workforce takes them.”  Reuters reports that “approximately 57 million Americans rely on specialty drugs,” with the average prescription costing $1,766.00 in 2011.

“Specialty drugs are high-cost drugs used to treat complex or rare conditions, such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, hepatitis C and hemophilia. The drugs are often self-injected or administered in a physician’s office or through home health services,” according to Wellmark. Specialty pharmacies specialize in the delivery and clinical management of specialty drugs.  It is reported that the average cost per specialty medication is $2,000.00 per month,

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About Us

Welcome to the NeedyMeds Voice! We look forward to presenting you with timely, provocative pieces on healthcare reform, patient advocacy, medication and healthcare access, and other health-related news. Our goals are to educate, enlighten, and elucidate; together, we will try to make sense of the myriad and ongoing healthcare-related changes in the U.S. today.